Do Not Read

We the downtrodden,

We the swine of the mud,

Even on our last leg— stand taller, and shine brighter.

 

Though our minds have become heavy,

Filled with the cache of our trauma.

Our feet blistered and callused.

 

Even when our tongues—carry the stench of deprivation,

and our eyes the redness of malnutrition, 

We remain stronger.

 

Our voices,

O, how they carry such — melodious tones,

As if sound itself was birthed from the womb of our Blackness.

 

Our bodiesbattered and wrongfully rendered,

Though brutalized and full of rot,

Can express the soul of humanity through a dance,

and can carry the weight of the world, with the moon pulling it down.

 

Our pain lives through our legs,

Our joy through our arms,

Our spirit through our center,

And through our heads come forth our exuberance,

No matter how many times the world has thrown us down.

 

We, the downtrodden— and forgotten

We, the swine of the mud,

Have known the fall of gods,

for we were once— as them, 

and they— as us.

 

Even at our worst, we are brighter.

Our lowest point has become the best,

of their best.

The language — of their cool.

The lifeof their party.

 

Our voices have become their aspirations.

Our skin— their link to culture.

The depth of our breathe has filled the lungs of this nation.

Oxygen used to set ablaze — it’s claim to culture.

 

We are too strongto not be made, American and proud.

We must be the patriots they speak of,

for the nation before you

 was built upon our shoulders.

To lose us would mean — losing yourself, 

and all you have come to cherish in democracy.

We, the true Democrats,

We, the downtrodden,

Have fought for your right to be white and free,

To be the rebel,

The revolutionary socialist. 

We have fought for the open pastures where you perform your whiteness.

Every step of ours acts as a liberating note for our freedom song,

as well as a hardening cast of liberation’s true form.

An object you abducted, and made your own.

 

We the broken,

The spirits of your entertainment,

have been better than youeven at our worst— and remain so....